tv The Last Word MSNBC January 30, 2013 10:00pm-11:00pm PST
against it by a 2-1 margin. and house republicans killed the bill altogether, that was the last congress, before inauguration. now it is the new congress. and now the issue is back, and democrats in the senate are fast-tracking it. senate republicans seem to just be prepared to let it quietly pass, but it does have to go through the house. and so house republicans have to resolve this looming question, what have they learned about how to deal with women's issues? are they going to take a cue or kill it in the house again? is the problem just the way they talk about things like killing the violence against women act? or is the problem, dude, you're killing the violence against women act? it is a structural question, really, a question of whether the house looks to the national discussion, the republicans in the senate, the other republicans in washington, the national message of what went wrong for the republicans in this last election, or do they look home for guidance? do house republicans look for guidance to what is going on in their states?
to what is going on with the republicans back home. because what is going on with the republicans back home, another universe from what is happening at the national level. and that is the special in depth look that we'll take tomorrow. have a great evening. 47 days after the massacre at sandy hook elementary school in newtown, connecticut, the in newtown, connecticut, the senate judiciary committee held a rare, full committee hearing televised hearing on gun and ammunition control. how rare is that? it was their first gun control hearing of the 21th century. >> americans are looking to us for solutions and for action. >> battle over gun control moves to capitol hill. >> the first hearing since the newtown massacre. >> speaking is difficult. but i need to say something important.
>> gabrielle giffords, at the senate judiciary hearing. >> giffords made a plea for action. >> the bold, the courageous americans are counting on you. >> behind every victim lays a matrix of failure. >> mark kelly, husband of gabrielle giffords. >> rights demand responsibility. first, fix gun background checks. >> it is not a serious solution for reducing crime. >> the nra is clearly, dramatically out of step. >> lapierre dismissed background checks. >> background checks will never be universal. >> you will never get criminals to go through universal background checks. >> because criminals will never submit to them. >> they will not go to purchase the guns because there will be a background check. >> you missed the point completely. and i think it is basic. >> senator, i think you -- >> let there be order. >> i think you're missing it.
>> let there be more. >> if chairman patrick leahy pressed lapierre. >> if you're a dealer, that is already the law. >> please, mr. lapierre, i'm not trying to play games here, but if you could just answer the question. >> rights demand responsibility. law abiding gun owners will not accept blame. >> americans are looking to us for solutions and for action. >> this time must be different. >> the senate judiciary committee today held the first senate hearing on gun and ammunition control, in the aftermath of the massacre of 20 first graders and six women educators at sandy hook elementary school. baltimore county police jim johnson addressed one of the more absurd proposals that have been floated in the wake of the first graders. the idea that they should be
protected by teachers with guns. >> you're a teacher in a classroom, an educator, you dedicated your entire life to that pursuit, but you have a side arm strapped to yourself, you better have it all the time. because if you put it in the desk drawer, the brief case, where will you leave it? let me tell you something, carrying this weapon on my side has been a pain all of these years. i'm glad i have it if i need it. but let me tell you, it is an awesome responsibility. what about the summertime? how do you stop the 16-year-olds who want to touch the weapon? certainly, the holsters, i am spending 200 apiece so you can't rip it from my side. >> the committee controlled by the democrats called try witnesses opposed to -- three witnesses opposed to all forms of gun and ammunition controls. and only two, proposed by president obama and senator diane feinstein.
the husband of gabrielle giffords giffords, mark kelly, was there. >> the shooter in tucson showed up with two third round magazines, one in his nine mm. he unloaded the contents in 15 seconds, very quickly, happening very fast. the first bullet went into gabby's head, bullet 13 went into a nine-year-old girl named christina taylor green. if he had a ten round magazine, let me back up. when he tried to reload one 33 round magazine with another 33 round magazine he dropped it. and a woman grabbed it. it gave the people around him the time to tackle him. i contend if that same thing happened when he was trying to reload one ten-round magazine with another ten-round magazine, meaning he didn't have access to a high capacity magazine, and the same thing happened,
christina taylor green would be alive today. >> the case against banning high-capacity magazines and assault weapons was made anecdotally by witnesses in favor of high-capacity magazines. but all the anecdotes were about people defending themselves using more traditional firearms. >> i would like to begin with the compelling story of sarah mckinly. home alone with her baby, she called 911 when two violent intruders tried to break down her door. these men were breaking in to steal the prescriptions of the recently deceased husband. before the police arrived, while she was still on the phone with 911, these violent intruders broke down her door. one of the men had a foot-long hunting knife. as the intruders forced their way into their home, ms. mckinly
fired her weapon, fatally wounding one of the violent attackers. the other fled. >> every republican on the committee insisted that there was absolutely nothing they could do to reduce in any way the number of people massacred in our schools, or our movie theaters or shopping malls. they all believe that is not a job for senators. that is a job for psychiatrists. >> we need to ask whether years of deinstitutionalization of the mental health population has left america more vulnerable. perhaps it is time to consider our background check laws to see if they need to be updated, screen out the people who are subjected to court-ordered out patient mental health treatment. >> no mental health professional was actually asked to speak at that hearing. and so we will now partially put together the panel of witnesses
who appeared in the senate today, and this time include a mental health expert. joining me now are dr. richard freedman, a psychiatrist at the cornell medical college. gail trotter, a senior fellow at the women's forum, baltimore county police jim johnson, the chair of the national law enforcement partnership to prevent gun violence. he also testified today. dr. freedman, i want us to listen to something that senator franken said today. >> i want to be careful that we don't stigmatize mental illness. the vast majority of people with mental illness are no more violent than the rest of the population, in fact, they're more likely to be the victims. >> doctor, you wrote a piece about this. you pointed out that the shooter in newtown, connecticut was not psychotic, did not exhibit
symptoms that a medical health care professional could have reasonably used in an evaluation that would somehow have prevented him from ever getting his hands on his mother's weapons. what can we reasonably expect from the mental health system in this arena? and what can we not reasonably expect? >> well, lawrence i think to answer that question it is important for viewers to understand that the vast majority of people with mental illness are not violent. in fact, people with mental illness contribute to only about 4% of violence in the united states. so all the focus on mentally ill people as the source of danger and violence is really a diversion and a distraction from the much larger problem in this country. which is that we have really homicide by firearms as a huge epidemic. 30,000 people every year die by firearms in the united states.
17,000 by the suicide, and 13,000 by homicide. the vast majority of people who die by homicide are not mentally ill. the vast majority are not mentally ill people. >> gail trotter, i want to listen to the exchange that you had with senator whitehouse today. >> ms. trotter, quick question, sarah mckinly, in her home, used the assault weapon that would not have been banned. >> i don't know what type she used. >> well, trust me, it was, and that would not have been banned under the statute. so i think it proves the point with ordinary firearms, not 100-magazine peculiar types of artifacts, people are quite capable of defending themselves.
>> gail trotter, the hearing is about legislation that would ban assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. and you used an -- anecdote of somebody defending themselves, in fact, in the hearing there was not a single anecdote of anybody defending themselves, anybody, you or any republicans, successfully defending themselves with an assault weapon and/or a high-capacity magazine. every weapon that was mentioned was a more traditional firearm that would not in any way be affected by legislation contemplated by anyone. could you not find a single example anywhere in the country of anyone successfully defending themselves with the kind of weapons used in our uniquely american massacres? >> i am very grateful to be able to come on this show tonight and
share a view that i think is not being well represented in our national discussion right now. which is why i'm glad that the senators asked me to come and speak at the hearing today. >> gail, i have to interrupt you here and now, because i asked you a specific question, i need specific answers, we don't have as much time that you had in that over three-hour hearing today. so tell me if you can find even one, and just answer that, i believe you couldn't find one. because if you could find such case anywhere in the 50 states we would have heard about it today. you didn't have that case, did you? >> i would like to direct all of your viewers -- >> you're not answering the question. >> i am. >> just say i can't answer the question, it will embarrass my case, if that is what you're going to do, take a minute to make a speech. >> you asked me a question, i will answer it if you give me the chance. >> take a minute and let's see if there is an answer in there somewhere, if there is not i will have to stop you. >> i suggest that all the
viewers go to my testimony, posted on line, there is an appendix three pages long that details attacks against women by violent men. and i detailed in my testimony a case where a woman was attacked by five men. and the point of telling the story about sarah mckinly and three pages of testimony in my testimony about women facing attack by violent men is to show that women are at a severe disadvantage. it doesn't matter what type of gun sarah mckinly used to defend her baby. and it doesn't matter for women who are in that situation when their life is on the line, their children's lives are on the line and they need to be able to have the fire power to protect their family. so i think that in that situation, i could relate to that story. and i can relate to the three
pages of -- in my testimony about women facing attack. over 90% of violent crime in our country, occurs without a firearm. and in those situations, women are always at a severe disadvantage. >> okay, gail, i read your testimony and saw your testimony and read your appendix. i want to make it clear to the audience you used exactly one real example. and used a fancy example, which we'll play the tape letter. i read every one of them. there are 14 of them. not one of them included an assault will being used defensively at all, or a high-capacity magazine. in fact, there were 14 such cases in your appendix. in nine of the cases, in nine of the cases, the assailants fled as soon as a shot was fired. in two of your cases, the possible criminals fled as soon as they saw a gun. as soon as they saw a woman with a gun, they fled.
there were only five cases in which -- in which anything else happened involving a shot from them. i want to move on to the chief. and then i'll come back to you, gail. chief johnson, i want to ask you a question. you did not hear in that testimony today a single example of anyone in america, male or female, successfully defending themselves from some kind of attack or intrusion with an assault weapon or high capacity magazine. and the hearing was about that use of that kind of equipment specifically. and every single point we heard from gail, anybody else was about people using traditional firearms. and chief, using them successfully. they were all stories of people who proved they don't need these weapons. >> there was no evidence or no testimony presented today that involved an assault weapon used
to defend one's self in an attack. ms. trotter, we made it very clear today that law enforcement and frankly no political leader is calling for a ban on all weapons. this is not what this is about. in a domestic violence case, we know that over 50% of women are killed by a gun, by domestic partner or household member. if there is a gun in the house, where there is a domestic violence situation we know there is a 500% greater chance they will be victims. and in states that have a background check, a thorough background check, the possibility of being a victim reduces by over 38%. so we're not trying to keep the guns out of the hands of women or anyone in this particular case. just guns that are frankly assault weapons and in this case, high-capacity weapons, more than ten, and a thorough background check. >> gail, on your appendix list, i just want to make another reference to it. of the 14 cases several of them included situations in which the
attacker was not armed at all. >> that is exactly my point. >> you then, gail, in your testimony, i want to go to one more piece of your testimony. >> sure. >> i'm sorry, we're rushing because we don't have so much time here. where you talked about the assault weapon in the hands of a young weapon. you were making the case of how assault weapons empower young women. and you offered this purely, entirely fictional case that has never happened. let's listen to this. >> an assault weapon in the hands of a young woman defending her babies in her home becomes a defense weapon. and the peace of mind that a woman has as she is facing three, four, five violent attackers, intruders in her home with her children screaming in the background, the peace of mind that she has knowing that she has a scary looking gun, gives her more courage when she is fighting hardened, violent criminals.
>> gail, there are you in testimony to the senate, imagining babies screaming in the background. imagining a woman with an assault weapon facing down five armed intruders. that has never happened, this is not one such case that you have ever found anywhere and so for your testimony to the senate, you had to imagine it, didn't you? >> i think we should not limit women's second amendment right to choose to defend themselves. i don't think it is a laughing matter. >> it is to me, gail. imagined -- >> you can't imagine being a mother in your home with children trying to defend them. >> you don't go to the senate to imagine things, you do not go to the senate to imagine things.
you go to senate to report things. you go to the senate to help them with facts about how they should construct the legislation. and you went in there imagining something that never happened. >> i have to go on there and give a particular view point. speaking for millions of american women, for politics -- >> you were not speaking for one, tell me the name of a woman who did that with an assault weapon. it has never happened. >> you are completely ignoring the point that i am trying to make. >> if you had that case you don't have it. >> women should not have undue burdens on their second amendment right to defend themselves, their families and the vulnerable members of their family. >> what is the name of your organization? the independent women's forum. >> yes. >> are you an independent woman or a right-wing republican? >> i'm an independent woman. >> do you believe in a woman's right to choose abortion in certain cases? >> i believe in a woman's right to choose to defend. >> you don't believe in a woman's right to choose in cases of her own health. >> you just assumed that. i didn't answer that.
you just assumed that, that is not what i was asked on this show. >> you were not -- when you don't answer that question, you represent these right wing views we know who you are. and the only women's right to choose that you support -- you support the women's right to choose massacre weapons, that is all you support. >> calling people names is not a way to win an argument. >> gail, you support a woman's right to choose any kind of massacre weapon she might want. but you do not support a woman's right to make her own choices in health. >> it is a defense weapon. >> it has never been used as a defense by a woman in america. can you find one woman in america who has actually used one for defense. >> a person who is not able to defend themselves. so putting women in that category. >> gail, we have to go, your woman's organization, which has no members, by the way, just a thousand person mailing list. your organization could not find one woman in america who defended herself with these massacre weapons that you want to continue to make available to the mass murderers of this country.
and that is what your efforts are doing. >> you're advocating, putting undue burden's on a woman's right to defense. >> you just got the last word, i wish we had more time for this. thank you all for joining me tonight. >> thank you. >> thanks. coming up. wayne lapierre's big flip-flop on background checking. he used to be in favor of them. and today he is opposed to them. and we'll have more in today's hearing. and in the rewrite tonight, the witnesses who were not there. no one in newtown, connecticut testified at today's hearing. but we'll hear from one of the parents of one of the victims from the newtown massacre in tonight's rewrite. ...so as yous customer satisfaction is at 97%. mmmm tasty. and cut! very good. people are always asking me how we make these geico adverts. so we're taking you behind the scenes. this coffee cup, for example, is computer animated.
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>> former congresswoman gabrielle giffords, the victim of a gun massacre using a high-capacity magazine was the first to speak at the senate hearing on gun violence today. she was helped out of the hearing room -- after her short introduction, and then succeeded in her testimony by her husband, mark kelly. wayne lapierre -- >> my problem with background checks, you're never going to get criminals to go through universal background checks. all the law abiding people, you create an enormous federal bureaucracy. and we're not going to prosecute the bad guys if they do catch one. none of it makes any sense in the real world. >> mr. lapierre, that is the point. the criminals won't go to purchase the guns because there
will be a background check. we'll stop them from the purchase. you missed that point completely. >> senator, i think you missed -- >> let there be order. >> senator patrick leahy, the chairman of the committee, pointed out the last time he testified about this his testimony was the exact opposite. >> we think it should be mandatory for background checks at every gun sale, no loopholes for anyone. in fact it is the media's well-kept secret, they were the supporter of the check list now in place. we think it is reasonable to provide for instant gun checks at shows just like at gun stores and pawn shops. >> what happened between 1999 and now? for one thing, the tea party happened. people with even more extremist
positions on several issues than the national rifle association. people flagrantly brandishing their second amendment rights at political events, specifically gun toting events for president obama, showing up in campaign events in new hampshire and elsewhere, with their guns on display. and it was the gun rights groups trying to out do the nra with more inflammatory retroactive, today, wayne lapierre and the nra were determined not to allow any gun rights fanatics to sound crazier than wayne lapierre. joining me now, msnbc's krystal ball, and krystal, it seems to me that the tea party has had its effect on the nra, nudging them even further into the crazy season. >> yes, it seems to be.
the nra is an elitist group, sending out the anecdotes, what you heard gail trotter remark about, they questions their membership that obama and the democrats want to come for their guns. and that has worked for a long time. but what we're seeing now, i think what we're seeing today is the death of a caricature, that stuff worked for so long. but what are we talking about? assault weapons ban, background checks for everyone. all of that makes reasonable sense to a lot of people, including a lot of nra members. >> frank smyth, take us through the journey that the nra traveled through, from 1999, taking a fairly reasonable position to where they are now. today, wayne lapierre's testimony, absolutely no law of any kind, the nra is opposed to anything anyone will propose.
>> you have to remember, the nra was a moderate legislation in favor of gun control for most of its history through the late 19th century and right through most of the 20th century. including backing legislation in 1934, and 1968, in favor of gun control. i think what happened in 1999, was that wayne lapierre was under pressure. and i think the nra was concerned that a law was going to be passed that they -- opposed. so they made a law in favor of background checks. i think there was a back lash that said you never should make a tactical decision, you should stand for principles, and i think it explains his apparent flip-flopping between '99 and today. and the other thing to remember is that wayne lapierre is not the leader, per se, of the national rifle association. he leads at the behest of the
board. and i think right now there is a great deal of turmoil, for reasons that krystal discussed, because of the pressure that we've seen for gun control in this country. >> let's listen to a point that dick durbin made. >> we need the fire power and the ability to protect -- ourselves from our government, from the police if they knock on our doors and we need to fight back, do you agree with that point of view? >> if you look at why the founding fathers put it there, they lived under the tyranny, and didn't want to live under tyranny. >> chief johnson, you have heard it. the belief that the nra as a second amendment has to give the americans the fire power to fight against you, against our government. >> frank this is the point you make, the nra's position now is
that citizens need the fire power that matches the heavier fire power of the police and the military. >> look, lapierre has written that himself and said it himself a number of times, whenever he is in front of a sympathetic forum, last week at the nevada seminar, he called the second amendment freedom's most valuable, most cherished idea. clearly, the rhetoric, the absolutist if not extremist rhetoric of the national rifle association seems to be catching up with them. >> krystal ball and frank smyth, thank you for joining us. >> my pleasure. coming up, hillary clinton says she just can't see herself getting back into politics. but andrea mitchell can, which is why she asked hillary clinton if she would challenge joe biden in the democratic primary.
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the voices of newtown, connecticut, were not heard at today's senate hearing but they were heard at another hearing tonight in connecticut. we will bring you the moving testimony of one of the parents of one of the 6-year-olds killed in the massacre at sandy hook elementary school. testimony given just hours ago. that is in tonight's rewrite. [ male announcer ] when these come together,
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the united states's first woman president, so i'm not saying that as a question, i'm just observing that we think that that might happen. >> in the spotlight tonight, hillary clinton, who is the only person who can get more media attention by resigning as secretary of state than she could by continuing in that job. >> i am really looking forward to stepping off the fast track that i've been on. you know, i've been out of politics as secretary of state. i don't see myself getting back into politics. >> yes, she actually said that. i don't see myself getting back into politics. of course, everyone else can see her getting back into politics, which is why our own andrea mitchell asked her how she would feel about running against joe biden for the democratic presidential nomination. >> do you feel that -- that joe biden has the vice president has the right of first refusal as it
were, within the party, or is it an open competition? >> well, american politics is always an open competition. but you know, i have no position on this, i have no opinion on it. i am still secretary of state and can't engage in politics. >> joining me now is msnbc's richard wolff. and richard, the academy award for keeping a straight face goes to hillary clinton when she says i can't really engage in politics. that is just a remarkable performance. >> actually, i have a limited way in which i can engage in discussion. what is she talking about? she is leaving the stage. this is exactly why she is such a formidable candidate, she answers the question in what sounds like an obvious way, but doesn't really answer the question. she is brilliant.
>> i want to get to something that has to be dealt with. and that is the health question. let's listen to hillary clinton's answer about that. >> it doesn't factor in at all. you know, i have no doubt that i'm healthy enough and my stamina is great enough i will be fully recovered to do whatever i choose to do. >> okay, we have that out of the way. >> just in case you wonder. >> what is the realistic timing for her on making real public moves on this? because joe biden seems to already be doing that. >> you know that is what is so interesting and clinical in answer to the question. everything is an open question in american politics. it would be a fascinating context, how does she need to stack this up? we know in that mid-term mark, the president will be a lame duck, effectively. that is the way to stack up the chips. she has the husband who has a
life long account of chips that he is owed. and he will use that and deploy that even if his wife is not going to do that. so it is something of an open question. she can run it right up to the mid-point of 2014. >> i bet everything i have on hillary's running. richard, thank you very much. coming up, the man who will replace john kerry in the united states senate. and in the rewrite tonight, the testimony that should have been heard by the senate today that actually was heard by the connecticut legislature tonight. we will bring you the moving testimony, just given a few hours ago by one of the parents of one of the kids killed at sandy hook elementary school. that is next. ke you feel alive. meet the five-passenger ford c-max hybrid. c-max says ha.
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sandy hook elementary school, giving moving testimony tonight to the connecticut legislature. this is testimony given just hours ago. that will be next. tina, change engineering in dubai, aluminum production in south africa, and the aerospace industry in the u.s.? at t. rowe price, we understand the connections of a complex, global economy. it's just one reason over 75% of our mutual funds beat their 10-year lipper average. t. rowe price. invest with confidence. request a prospectus or summary prospectus with investment information, risks, fees and expenses to read and consider carefully before investing. with investment information, risks, fees and expenses all stations come over to mithis is for real this time. step seven point two one two. verify and lock. command is locked. five seconds. three, two, one. standing by for capture. the most innovative software on the planet...
dragon is captured. is connecting today's leading companies to places beyond it. siemens. answers. in the rewrite tonight, the witnesses who were not there. no one from newtown, connecticut, testified at today's senate hearing which would never have occurred were it not for the massacre of 20 first graders and six educators in newtown, connecticut.
but testimony from newtown was heard today by the connecticut legislature's bipartisan task force on gun violence and school safety. david wheeler, whose 6-year-old son, benjamin, was shot to death in the elementary school, spoke at the hearing earlier this evening. here now, is his testimony. testimony that the senate judiciary committee should have heard today. >> we lost our son, benjamin the morning of december 14th. to an unstable, suicidal individual, who had access to a weapon that has no place in a home. right now, professionals in every area pertaining to this crime from mental health to
parenting to school safety are unable to connect the necessary dots to prevent this from happening again. a far more comprehensive system of identifying and monitoring individuals in mental distress is required. it needs to be implemented. that a person with these problems could live in a home where he had access to among the most powerful firearms available to non-military personnel is unacceptable. it doesn't matter to whom these weapons were registered. it doesn't matter if they were purchased legally. what matters is that it was far too easy for another mentally unbalanced, suicidal person who had violent obsessions to have easy access to unreasonably powerful weapons.
the inability of agencies to share information regarding at-risk individuals' mental states, personal histories, proximity to firearms, this contributed to the senseless murder of my son, and other children and adults. this is where you must focus your efforts. first, military-style assault weapons belong in an armory, under lock and key. they do not belong in a weapons safe in a home. we now have more unassailable proof that this is true. firearms should be registered,
annually. second, at-risk individuals must be identified, and continually assessed by capable mental health professionals in a way that leaves their dignity and their self-respect intact. most importantly, data bases of accurate information must be leveraged to allow identification of where the two issues of mental health and firearms ownership intersect. there is no reason that firearms registration can't capture data, they should be renewed regularly to allow that someone's mental state may change over time. as elected representatives, it
is your job to craft the legislation that keeps your constituents safe. thomas jefferson described our inalienable rights as life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, the rights with which we are endowed for the protection of which we have instituted governments. i do not think the composition of that foundational phrase was an accident. i do not think the order of those important words was haphazard or casual. liberty of a person to own a
high-powered magazine is second to the right of my son to his life. his life. to the right -- to live, of all of those children and those teachers. to the right to the lives of your children, of you, of all of us. all of our lives. it is second. let's honor the founding documents and get our priorities straight. thank you. [ male announcer ] there's a story behind the silver of philadelphia cream cheese. it always begins with fresh, local milk, blended with real wholesome cream. going fresh from the farm, to our fridge,
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it reduces the urge to smoke. it put me at ease that you could smoke on the first week. [ male announcer ] some people had changes in behavior, thinking or mood, hostility, agitation, depressed mood and suicidal thoughts or actions while taking or after stopping chantix. if you notice any of these stop taking chantix and call your doctor right away. tell your doctor about any history of depression or other mental health problems, which could get worse while taking chantix. don't take chantix if you've had a serious allergic or skin reaction to it. if you develop these stop taking chantix and see your doctor right away as some can be life-threatening. if you have a history of heart or blood vessel problems, tell your doctor if you have new or worse symptoms. get medical help right away if you have symptoms of a heart attack. use caution when driving or operating machinery. common side effects include nausea, trouble sleeping and unusual dreams. with chantix and with the support system it worked. it worked for me. [ male announcer ] ask your doctor if chantix is right for you.
standing here at this desk that once belonged -- at this desk that once belonged to president kennedy and to ted kennedy, i can't help but be reminded that even our nation's greatest leaders and all the rest of us are merely temporary workers. i'm reminded that this chamber is a living museum, a lasting memorial to the miracle of the american experiment. >> that was john kerry giving an emotional farewell speech today, he will be sworn in as secretary of state on friday. massachusetts governor today chose his former chief of staff to be the interim senator until a special election can be held. the 42-year-old father of two served. he was a graduate of duke
university and northeastern university of school of law in boston. senator cowan will join the recently appointed south carolina senator tim scott in the united states senate where they will be the first two african-americans to serve in the senate at the same time. governor patrick explained why he chose mr. cowan for the senate today. >> he has been a valued ally to me, and the people of the commonwealth. in every step he has brought perspective, wisdom, sound judgment and clarity of purpose. >> and lieutenant governor tim maury added this. >> he is cool, tom brady, george
clooney, james bond, the president have nothing on mo. >> really? i'll let you be the judge. >> there is no greater calling than to be able to go and serve the people of massachusetts, to give back to a state that has given so much to me. >> barney frank, who made public his desire to be the appointed senator and was the only person the governor could have appointed who could start the job at full speed and full effectiveness on friday released this statement. i know mr. cowan is committed to working hard and in socially fair and economically efficient manner towards resolving pending budget issues. i now look forward to the election of ed markey to providing the support he deserves. joining me now, msnbc's ari melber, i don't understand what happened. this is the very first time a massachusetts governor did not follow my advice, i ad